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Re: Adiantum lovers

  • Subject: Re: [ferns] Adiantum lovers
  • From: "Doret Vermeulen" cfa@mweb.com.na
  • Date: Tue, 11 Nov 2003 09:34:09 +0200

Hi Louise

Thanks for all the information you shared with us.

I must confess I do not know THAT much about Adiantums as they are difficult
to come by.

I only learn the fact of the ones that I have as I tend to forget all else.

Most ferns I only known from pictures as it is not a plant wide seen in our

Thanks again.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Louise Parsons" <parsont@peak.org>
To: <ferns@hort.net>
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2003 6:18 PM
Subject: Re: [ferns] Adiantum lovers

> How could ~any fern be boring ? ::smiles:: I cannot grow tropicals in our
> chilly, Oregon farmhouse. However I enjoy learning about any fern!
> Maidenhairs are a more subtle ferns to harvest spore from. Because it is
> to see ripening spore under the delicate indusium flap, it has taken me
> time to observe and learn how to "catch" spore. As the spore ripens, the
> does become more transparent, so that you can see the spore cases better.
> On the other hand, most maidenhairs are very easy to ~grow from spore. I
> tried "every method in the book", but my favorite is to sow spore on damp,
> fine (70 mesh), quartz sand. This "silica sand" is available from
builder's and
> construction supply houses. A hundred pound sack is well under US $10. It
> used for testing mechanical properties of soil. It is also available in
> quantities at craft stores. As with any spore, you need damp, yet
> sterile conditions. A custard cup allows some depth for water below,
> drowning-wet conditions on top. Very fine sand makes handling wee babies
> easy.
> I grow fernlets on in a sand-soil mix (in clear plastic pastry boxes) for
> time before potting on. Peat pellets in a clean environment such as a
> box are another reliable method for growing from spore. Soak the pellets
> boiling water, then place in a clear container until cool. Because peat
has a
> tendency to clump, I slightly favor the use of sand.
> What I am wondering is if the various A. raddianum cultivars come true
> spore. My  limited experience is that they do not.  I have grown A. r.
> 'Gracillimum' from my exquisite parent plant and most of the youngsters
> quite have its delicacy and grace.
> A few A. raddianum cultivars are available here locally. 'Pacific Maid' is
> of the hardiest, but still requires winter protection. 'Fritz Luthey' is
> slightly less so, but will survive. Unless the soil actually freezes to
> depth of their roots, both will come back in the spring.
> My favorite maidenhair is  A. aleuticum 'Subpumillum'. It keeps its
> when grown from spore, but is not one-hundred percent true either. Close
> on my faves list is rosy maidenhair,  A. hispidulum. The latter also needs
> protection from hard frost.
> Many maidenhairs want some real mineral soil. They need even just a bit of
> and loam. Soiless potting mixes are terrific for preventing compaction
> growing in pots. However, to enjoy real longevity in many pot-grown ferns,
> should contain some amount of real mineral soil. If you wish to grow
> maidenhairs in a greenhouse, many require cool conditions. Even those
native to
> lower latitudes often enjoy cool soil. Evaporative cooling suits them
> especially well.
> In "Ferns for American Gardens" John Mickel tells a wonderful story about
> adaptable nature of Himalayan maidenhair, A. venusutm. Here in western
> this is an excellent choice for those who want the lacy, lovely,
> look in ordinary garden conditions. One of my very large patches even gets
> few hours of sun here and only occasional water during our summer drought.
> Although I have over a hundred kinds of ferns, I am never a garden or
> snob. Easy, yet beautiful, plants get lots of respect here!
> This summer, I was so swamped with work that I had to stop all my garden
> We are still very busy, but there is ~always time for ferns and
> If you ever visit Oregon, try to stop at Multnomah Falls, east of Portland
> Interstate 80. The maidenhairs draped over damp, mossy, black cliffs of
> are splendid. The sight reminds us that many ferns are essentially rock
> Cheers, Louise
> Corvallis, ORegon, Pacific Northwest US
> cool mediterranean
> http://www.peak.org/~parsont/rockgard/
> *********************************************
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